Purpose To investigate the potential of colchicine to improve bleb function after trabeculectomy. Methods To find the maximum usable colchicine concentration, an ocular irritation study was performed with the Draize test at concentrations of 0.001%, 0.01% and 0.1%. Additionally, the synergistic effect of topical colchicine instillation and MMC application to surgical site was evaluated in a rabbit model by measuring changes after trabeculectomy in intraocular pressure (IOP) and bleb morphology score at 3, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 42, and 49 days. Results Experiments with a rabbit model of trabeculectomy showed that 0.04% MMC plus 0.01% colchicine was more effective than saline and 0.04% MMC alone in maintaining IOP reduction at days 7–49 (P < 0.01 at all time points) and day 49 (P < 0.05), respectively, while 0.04% MMC alone was more effective than saline only at days 7–35 (P < 0.05 at all time points). 0.04% MMC plus 0.01% colchicine and 0.04% MMC alone were more effective than saline at preserving bleb score at days 7–21 and 35–49 (P < 0.05 at all time points) and at days 7–35 (P < 0.05 at all time points), respectively. Conclusion Colchicine may be a promising adjuvant for strengthening the effect of MMC and improving the survival of the filtering bleb in trabeculectomy.
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